10 Easy Swaps to Eat Less Meat, Dairy, and Eggs

January 11, 2016

Considering cutting back on animal products? Whether you're inspired to help animals, eat a bit healthier, or reduce your environmental footprint—or maybe you just want to see if you can do it—we're here to show you some fun and tasty vegan alternatives to meat, dairy, and eggs! Read on for ten items you'll always find in our pantries.

Dairy-free Milk and Cheese

Instead of: Cheddar on tacos or mozzarella on your next pizza
Try: Daiya Shreds

Plant-Based Egg, Meat, and Dairy AlternativesThese melty shreds are dairy-, soy-, and gluten-free. Mozzarella, cheddar, pepperjack, or even a mix that's perfect for Mexican dishes—Daiya's got the flavor you're looking for to deliver a creamy, cheesy fix!

But where do you find it? Click here to find Daiya near you.

Instead of: Cow's milk in your post-workout smoothie or cereal
Try: Silk Almond Milk

Silk Almond Milk

1. Almond milk just tastes better than milk from animals.
2. The Silk marketing team is hilarious. See what we mean here.

That's enough to tempt you to try this nut milk on its own, right?

But where do you find it? Click here to find Silk near you.

Plant-based Condiments

Instead of: Egg-based mayo on your sandwich or in your potato salad
Try: Hampton Creek Just Mayo

Just Mayo Vegan Mayo

The future of food tech is here, people. Stay tuned for more coverage of that on the blog soon, but for now you've got to try this delicious mayo that left us saying, "Miracle what?" This is the real deal!

But where do you find it? Click here to find Just Mayo near you.

Instead of: Butter on your biscuits or in your batch of baked goods
Try: Earth Balance Buttery Sticks

Earth Balance Butter Sticks

It's as simple as this: You don't need cows to make craveable sweet treats, so why not give this plant-based alternative a try? Click here to find Earth Balance near you.

Vegan Proteins

Instead of: Chicken on a salad or a chicken tender platter
Try: Beyond Meat Lightly Seasoned Chicken-Free Strips

Beyond Meat

These tenders are delicious and convenient straight out of the package, but we've got a pro-tip to make them even better: Whip up a simple vegan batter—this one from Whole Foods uses staples you probably have in your pantry now—and coat these bad boys in it then pan fry them for a few minutes. Dip in a grainy mustard and enjoy as you wonder why you ever ate meat anyway.

But where do you find it? Click here to find Beyond Meat near you.

Instead of: The ocean-dwelling sort of fish with chips
Try: Gardein Fishless Filets

gardein fishless filets

A buttery breading and a flaky inside make these the perfect alternative for getting your pub classic fix while staying true to your goal to cut back on meat. These go great in sandwiches, tacos, or on their own with french fries!

But where do you find it? Click here to find gardein near you.

Instead of: Sausage on your breakfast sandwich or on your meat lover's pizza
Try: Lightlife Gimme Lean Sausage

Gimme Lean

Need protein? Gimme Lean's got it for you. With 7 grams in each 2 oz serving, a veganized english muffin sandwich with tofu, Gimme Lean, and Daiya slices is a great way to kickoff a Meatless Monday...or Tuesday...or Wednesday...you get where we're going with this.

But where do you find it? Click here to find Lightlife near you.

Instead of: Turkey on a bagel sandwich or roast beef in reuben
Try: Tofurky Deli Slices


There's a reason that the family-owned and independent Turtle Foods Island has been around for over two decades: They make amazing, convenient products like Tofurky Deli Slices. Embrace the playful name because it doesn't get easier than opening up a package of Tofurky, piling it high on your favorite sandwich bread, and topping with pickles, tomatoes, and a delicious mustard!

But where do you find it? Click here to find Tofurky near you.

Instead of: Hot dogs around the campfire or with franks and beans
Try: Field Roast Frankfurters

There are many vegan "hot dogs" out there, but the "meatiness" of this one makes it taste even better than those antiquated animal-based hot dogs. Don't take our word for it, though. Grab a batch from your local Whole Foods' vegetarian section for your next camping trip. Don't forget the vegetarian baked beans to go with it!

But where do you find it? Click here to find Field Roast near you.

Instead of: Beef in your stroganoff, bacon on your BLT, or chicken in your stir-fry
Try: Upton's Naturals

Upton's Seitan and Jackfruit

You want hearty? Try this unique take on seitan! This may be new to many people but seitan has been around for centuries and it is experiencing a North American revival! Click here to find Upton's near you.

What we like about these ten picks is that they're so easy to cook with that you're sure to stick to your meat-free goals! Even in a pinch, you're good to go when you're stocked up on these goods. With so many meat-free substitutes out there, it was hard to choose just ten! What'd we miss, readers? Tell us about your go-to plant-based alternative in the comments below.